Naming VBS 2014. Here’s how it went down:
1. Prayer – here’s a quote from a guy named unknown - “Prayer does not enable us to do the greater works, prayer IS the greater works.” We pray a lot.
2. Ideation – folks from all over the country gathered at LifeWay to “ideate” VBS themes. Three ideas rose to the top.
3. Splitting into three teams, we hammered out the details—proposing titles, biblical content, rotation site/names, activities, snacks, decorations, etc…
4. Each team did a presentation for the other teams.
5. We prayed. We voted – but we’re still far from a decision.
6. Theme ideas vetted by pastors, children’s ministers, etc… again folks outside the LifeWay walls.
7. Finally, a vote. A decision is made!
8. “…but that theme doesn’t really have a strong name” – “…it just doesn’t seem to say what this theme is really about—given what the Bible content is.” – “Can we talk about the title again?”
And talk we did. For several weeks. I’ve worked in VBS since Kingdom Caper and we’ve never been this far into the creative process and not had a name.
9. We met to decide on name.
10. We met again to decide on a name.
11. We invited more people and met again to decide on a name.
12. We met again. …and again, and again.
13. VBS 2014 writer’s conference comes and goes. Still no title.
Sometimes, waiting is tough but we know, deep down, God has things well in hand. We keep praying.
14. We met again – maybe even one more time, I can’t remember – and finally, like a phoenix rising from the ashes of countless other fallen titles, the VBS 2014 Title emerged!!!
15. We continue to pray as it goes to legal – both inside and outside counsel have to approve it.
16. We get the “all clear” and we’re good to go! WE HAVE A TITLE!
So, without further ado, the official, signed, sealed, delivered title of VBS 2014 is…
Stay tuned! You’re gonna love it!!
Hey guys! Many of you asked for a STEP by STEP of the ENTER SIGN seen in the videos and at Preview events so here you go:
12″ Chipboard letters (JoAnn’s or Hobby Lobby)
Round chipboard boxes (JoAnn’s or Hobby Lobby)
1 panel of high density foam insulation board, 2″ thick
Red latex house paint
Silver metallic spray paint
Jigsaw, fine tooth blade
2 strings of Christmas or patio lights
Loctite Power Grab All Purpose Construction Adhesive, clear
1. Carefully cut off the front of the letter using an Exacto knife. Use this as template to layout the light bulbs. NOTE: You can buy any letter, A through Z, to spell or make a sign for “Registration” or “Welcome” or whatever you’d like!
2. Spray paint the inside and the edges of the letters with a silver metallic spray paint.
3. Cut the high density foam board to 2’ X 8’.
4. Center the letters and round boxes on the board allowing about 2 inches between each letter. Lightly score a few lines around them to mark their place on the board.
5. Create a triangle at the bottom by striking a 45 degree angle from the bottom left and right corners of the board. This triangle will make the point of the arrow.
6. Measure 2” from either side of the top letter. Strike a line to the bottom left corner of the board and another to the bottom right corner. This will form the left and right side of your sign. (You’re basically drawing the sign around the letters.) Freehand the curve at the top.
7. Remove the letters and round boxes. Using a jigsaw, cut out the sign. If needed, use a hacksaw blade to finish the cut. Sand or file the sides to smooth out any rough edges.
8. Using construction adhesive, position and glue the triangle/arrow in place. Construction adhesive can also be used to fill in the space – like spackling – between the triangle and the arch.
9. Paint the whole thing with red latex house paint. Use the same paint for the outside of the letters.
10. Measure 1″ around the outside edge and tape it off with painters tape.
11. Spray paint the outside edge silver. Be careful to protect the middle ground of the sign using a scrap piece of cardboard or drop cloth.
12. Mark and cut out the holes in the letters and round boxes for the light sockets using an Exacto knife.
13. Remove the painters tape. Use the construction adhesive to glue the letters and round boxes back into place. After the glue dries, use an apple corer, or a 3/4” drill bit, to cut the holes through the board for the light sockets.
14. Take the bulbs out of the light strand. Starting at the top of the sign and the end of the light strand, use your thumb to push the light sockets through the back side of the sign. Bring the socket flush to the inside of the letters. NOTE: Guide the socket through the hole with your index finger—just be sure it’s unplugged first!) Screw the light bulbs into place.
15. Tape off any unused light sockets and tape the loose cords to the back of the sign. Also, tape the easel to the back leaving one leg free.
Plug it in and have a great VBS!
His shoes and socks were off in a flash!
Every year during VBS, Sally Cramer tries to come up with a hand print or foot print craft for her 2 & 3 year old VBS class. Check out this year’s amazing fleet of little blue feet!
“Parents love to have foot prints or hand prints at different stages of their kid’s lives,” Sally said, “so why not bring that idea to VBS every year?”
It started several years ago when Sally, Sherry Vick and Becky Clay helped their class of little people create hand/foot print tote bags! Sally recalled, “It was pretty cool to see the 4 year olds use their VBS tote bags to carry their stuff in when they promoted to BIG Church in the fall”.
To mix things up, Sally and friends decided to alternate tote bags with t-shirts. Tote bags on the even years—T-shirts on the odd years. The rest is VBS history!
A bit about Sally: she is married to Steve, has two great kids, Alyson (9), and Lucas (10), owns and operates her own graphic design business Little June Bug Graphics from her home, teaches graphic design at The Art Institute, and loves VBS! (She totally qualifies as a VBS Geek of the Week!) …and she goes to my church, FBC Nashville.
Thanks Sally for what you (and all of you reading this blog!) do to make VBS happen for kids everywhere! Teaching kids about Jesus—doesn’t get any better than that!
Bonus: gotta give a little shout out to Lydia (Adam’s mom) who is pretty “crafty” herself. The airplane shirt Adam is wearing? Lydia made it! Also, Patrick (Adam’s dad) works here at LifeWay and led music at VBS this year! Thanks Patrick!
Today on Kids Ministry 101, We’re part of the Family Ministry Blog Tour!!
Check this out. Here’s a sketch of the idea for the New Testament covers for VBS 2013. It’s not the best drawing I’ve ever done but it doesn’t have to be. Scott Burroughs, my artist friend in Arvada, CO, sees pictures in his head too. He can make any ‘ole rooster scratches look good!
Below is what Scott sent back—clearly a much better sketch, still rough, but one that we can pass around for suggestions/changes to those editor types like Melita.
After any suggested changes are made and the editors and managers sign off on the skecth, it goes back to Scott for “final art”. When we get the final art back, we add titles, barcodes, LifeWay logos, etc, and send it off to the printer!
Soon, here’s what you’ll see in LifeWay Bookstores everywhere. You might even use one of these New Testaments to introduce a child to Christ—which is after all what it’s all about!BONUS! Below is a sketch of an idea for one of the VBS 2013 Visual Pack posters. The idea for the posters, and many of our graphics this year, is put the viewer, that’s you, IN the park—to see Colossal Coaster World as if you were actually there. Ummm, it’s the back of a carousel horse. Again, not my best drawing ever but you get the idea.
BONUS 2! My son Evan and I just back from a trip out west where I actually got to meet Scott Burroughs, his wife Chrysti and their great/fun/cool kids Max and Ti. Scott and I have worked together for over 7 years now, sweating through some tough deadlines and praying through some tough person stuff. This is first time we’ve met face to face. It was a very cool!
What’s your favorite VBS set or VBS build?
What’s your favorite set building material?
What didn’t work?
Any tricks of the set building trade you wouldn’t mind sharing?
We use a lot of foam insulation board (our non-technical term). It takes latex house paint and craft paint very well, cuts easily, and is lightweight to carry. You can also glue it to wooden frames or to itself using Loctite All Purpose Construction Adhesive. The sheets are 4′ X 8′ and come in either .5″ or 2″ thicknesses. Check out your local home improvement store for both.
We like to use a carpenter’s knives (box cutters) with retractable blades, jig saw’s and hack saw blades to cut or form our foam insulation boards. We also use hot knives and hot wire knives. Here’s a link for the hot knife: http://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics.com/show/Item/ST1438/page/1
Here’s a link for the hot wire: http://woodlandscenics.woodlandscenics.com/show/Item/ST1435/page/1
You may find them cheaper elsewhere. Just Google “hot knife” or “hot wire knife.” We ordered our knives from the above links a few years ago and I must admit – the prices have gone up!
Also, you can hit the foam board, especially the Styrofoam, with a hot gun. It melts the Styrofoam slightly creating great effects while also making it easier to paint. Here’s the link to one – and it has hot knives too. http://www.harborfreight.com/professional-heat-gun-with-digital-temperature-settings-97114.html
PEEL THE THIN PLASTIC OFF THE FOAM BOARD BEFORE YOU PAINT.
For free set building material, you might also want to check out local furniture stores and carpet stores. Many of them will let you dumpster dive for cardboard, big chunks of styrofoam or used carpet rolls.
Thanks and let us know you thoughts!